Monday, August 26, 2013

Marketing Is Scary

I guess my plan for blogging more over the summer didn't go down so well.

Either way, I'm done with excuses, because there's really no excuse, nothing I have to say in my own defense as to why I didn't write more over the summer.

Anyway, what's done is done.

Okay, so I'm sort of nervous.

See, I love to write.

I mean, obviously.

Then again, you wouldn't say you love to breathe. You only do it because if you didn't, you would die. I live to write, and write to live. My world, and writing are dependent on each other. It's become a fact of my existence, I guess.

The thing is…

With my book out, and everything, I have to worry about marketing now.

And I don't like marketing, I just like writing.

Let's put it this way.

I'm not really a "people" person.

I'm a writer because I'm not a good speaker.

Although I could probably write a good speech for myself, there's no guarantees I'll actually say it well.

No, really, all I want to do is write.

And meet some hot male protagonist, but that's beside the point.

So my mom has kind of taken the role of a marketing advisor, and been helping me get my books into local book stores. Actually only one bookstore so far, and I haven't even given them the copies they requested yet, but hey, it's a start.

I'll admit, it scares me a little.

Like, a lot.

And it makes me wanna go like this "ASL;DKFJAS;DFJKL" all over the keyboard.

Seriously though…not that I'm going to have one any time soon, but…what exactly do you do at a book signing? I mean, besides sign books? Do you have to answer questions? Are there certain questions that people tend to ask?

Ahhh I'm making myself nervous.

Please, though, if you have any suggestions let me know.

–Jess

88 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I guess it depends if it was set up like a reading or just a chance for you to chat with people that come into the store about your book.
I know you're in school, but I think you'd do well visiting other schools and talking about your publishing journey. You could be such an inspiration to others your age.

Angela Brown said...

Marketing is not something I can claim to know so well. But I will say that the rare book signing I've attended, the author shared an excerpt from the book. They also gave a little (brief) speech thanking attendees and a little inspiration about the book then sat down and signed the book.

Not sure if any of that helps but I hope so. And may the marketing force be with you :-)

M Pax said...

Most of my friends do a reading with their signing. I've not done signings.

Marketing is hard. Most of the time I feel I'm talking to crickets.

Julia King said...

I'm in the same marketing boat. It is scary and daunting and I just want to sleep. I hope you (we) can get the hang of it so we can just continue writing.

I did a launch party for my book and read the first chapter and then I answered questions. Perhaps, those are some ideas for you. Good luck!

Sheena-kay Graham said...

Not to blow on your tornado but I won a marketing package. Like you I'm no marketing whiz and I prayed for the win. My advice would be to collect all the information you can on marketing. A good and less stressful way than reading a bag of articles would be checking author blogs and making note of what they did.

Bonnee Crawford said...

I'm sure you're not the only writer who has been faced with this dilemma as a lot of the writers I know are introverted when it comes to face-to-face human contact. Deep breaths and little steps, don't stress and you'll be fine. Know your book, know why you wrote it, know how you wrote it, and hopefully you'll be able to wing your way through the rest. Smile. People like people who smile. And remember that you're awesome. You got a book published after all. Best of luck to you getting used to the marketing side of things.

Chris said...

Hi Jess, just stopping by to say how delightful your blog is. Thanks so much for sharing. I have recently found your blog and am now following you, and will visit often. Please stop by my blog and perhaps you would like to follow me also. Have a wonderful day. Hugs, Chris
http://chelencarter-retiredandlovingit.blogspot.ca/

Connie Keller said...

In all the book signings I've been to, the author reads a chapter or two and then answers questions from the audience. (I'd suggest you have some author friends tell you what their most commons questions are so you can be prepared ahead of time.)

Happy Blog Blitz Day!

Hart Johnson said...

Marketing isn't much fun. I think the trick is instead of MARKETING to promote other authors you love and form relationships so they will in turn promote you. It's tricky, but I think it is less distasteful--fun to help other authors sell great books--and your marketing message comes across better from others. It grows faster.

Chrys Fey said...

Marketing is a necessary evil. I hated the idea that I had to market, too, but I've gotten used to it. I haven't done a book signing yet, but generally there is a little reading and a question/answer session. And of course you should say a few words to each person as you sign their book. I would be nervous, too, but I suppose these things get easier with experience.

Happy Blitz Day!!! :D

Michelle Wallace said...

Best of luck with the marketing of your book!
Happy Blog Blitz Day!!

Jeff Hargett said...

Hang on, The blitz be a comin'!

Hope things are going well for you. Keep writing! And keep loving it. :)

christinalfox said...

Have a happy Blitz Day

Cricket Fox

Trisha F said...

Happy Blitz day to you!!

Sadly I have no good ideas for marketing, except keeping your blog up to date as a marketing tool in and of itself. But as I'm not published yet, I haven't really had to do marketing for a single product. And I dread the day I do!

J. Lenni Dorner said...

I hope the marketing goes well.
Have a Blitzriffic day!

Heather Musk said...

I'm in no position to even think about marketing yet, I'm still working on the writing side of it.
When I've been to signings though, the author will usually read some excerpts, chat and take questions over tea and cake, and then do some signings.
If you're nervous, maybe set up something small to begin with, just a few people. You can build your confidence up from there.

Happy Blitz Day!

Medeia Sharif said...

Marketing is never easy and I'm forever learning about it. Happy Blitz Day.

keithkreates.com said...

I, too, am still working on the writing, but I hope to be looking for marketing hints and tips later.

Meantime, Happy Blitz Day!

Natalie Aguirre said...

Marketing scares me too, especially the public speaking. Happy Blitz Day!

Kelly Hashway said...

Marketing is tough. No doubt about it.

Happy blitz day!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Keep on writing! Happy Blitz Day! :)

Theresa Milstein said...

Jess, I wouldn't like the marketing part either. I wish I had more experience with it to give you advice. Good luck!
And Happy Blitz Day!

Jackie said...

Marketing does seem scary. :/ That's great you have your mom to help with the process! Happy Blitz Day!!!

Nicki Elson said...

Yep, that's the conundrum -- we write because that's what we like to do but then we get the onus of marketing foisted upon us. You'll find your groove. At first you'll have to push yourself beyond your comfort zone, but eventually certain aspects will become more fun than work.

Online efforts are probably a better place to focus your time & energy rather than live events. BUT one big bash to celebrate with everyone you know would be a good idea. And do think of it as a celebration, not a marketing event, to take the pressure off. Lots of people will ask you questions, which you'll be able to answer - don't worry. Also, people seem to like it when the author does a short reading from the book during the event.

Good job getting a book store to stock your books! Haaaapy Blitz Day!!!

Dawn Allen said...

Happy Blitz Day!

Susan Stuckey said...

You sentiments are totally understandable and marketing is hard. Best of luck. #Happy Blitz Day

Anna Tan said...

I suppose you just sign books. That's what I did. And remember to dress up! People normally want to take pictures as well so you'll want to look good! :)

I'm sure if you've gone this far you'll be able to answer any ol' pesky questions readers have for you.

All the best & happy Blitz day!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Prepare to smile a lot! Book signings are terrifying, but sometimes readers are actually terrified of authors - so if you smile, it works better for everyone.
And yes, be prepared to answer questions - know the logline/blurb of your book and answers to questions like - what books have you read about writing? Why do you like writing (name of genre)?

Sorry if this comes off as "bossy" but I felt like I went down in flames at a book signing when I couldn't answer the basics about my book - my mind went completely blank with terror. I still sold ten books, and people were super friendly, but I would have been happier if I had prepared myself.

Oh, and happy Blitz day!

Miranda Hardy said...

Marketing is the scary part for me too. Don't worry, it'll fall into place.

Happy Blitz Day!

Elise Fallson said...

I'm sure you'll do great at the book signing, just don't forget to have fun! :)
Happy Blitz day!!!

Arlee Bird said...

Marketing can be intimidating, but it can also be challenging and even fun. Find the good parts, be creative, and dive in.

Happy Blitz!

Lee
Tossing It Out

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi, Jessica. HAPPY BLITZ DAY!!

Christine Rains said...

Marketing is scary. It has never ceased to be for me even with a few books out! Good luck and happy blitz day. :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

And it's happy Blitz Day for you!

Heather M. Gardner said...

Take a deep breath!

They won't lynch you.

None of us really wants to talk to strangers, but that's the breaks when we need to sell our work.

Be proud of it and yourself.

BAZINGA!

You've been blitzed!

Have a great day!

Heather

Kate Larkindale said...

Marketing is scary, but if you want people to read your book, it's a necessary evil.

Happy Blitz Day!

Chippy said...

Happy Blitz Day to you,
Happy Blitz Day to you,
Happy Blitz Day dear Jessica,
Happy Blitz Day to you

:)

Elizabeth Seckman said...

I feel like I've just met younger me. All I like to do is write too and the marketing side annoys the heck out of me. Public speaking makes me want to vomit. I wish there was a magic marketing wand. Sigh. And I am also a constant blogging failure.

But I do love the writing!!

Happy blitz day!

dolorah said...

You might want to read one or two of your favorite passages, maybe give away some book markers.

I don't really know, I haven't had a book signing *sighs* The marketing side of being an author is very scary.

Suzanne Furness said...

Best of luck with the marketing.

Happy Blog Blitz Day!

Tim Knight said...

Good luck! Happy Blitz Day!

Feather Stone said...

Happy Blitz Day. Hope you enjoy the wacky world of being a successful author. Blessings

Tiana Smith said...

Marketing scares me too. I'd have no idea what to do at a book signing :) But hey, you have a book out, and that's something to celebrate! (P.S. I love the cover!)

Michelle McLean said...

Marketing is definitely one of my least favorite parts of this whole game. It gets easier the more you do it though :) And for signings, just make sure you bring some friends and family - then there will always be people hanging around talking to you no matter what ;)

Michael Di Gesu said...

Hi, Jess,

HAPPY BLITZ DAY!

No, marketing isn't fun, but it IS a NECESSARY evil! Keep breathing and jump right in. Maybe do a bit of research and figure out what would work best for you.

ALL the best with your book!

Julie Dao said...

Happy Blitz Day!!! So exciting that you have a book out, but I totally get it - I'm all about the writing part and would rather focus on that than the marketing (though it's just as crucial)! I think you've got a good start being on social media though!

Michael Anthony said...

Ekk! Marketing is tough. I'm in the same boat you are. Hang in there!

Happy Blitz Day!

Beth Ellyn Summer said...

marketing is scary which is why I try so hard not to think about that part. It's SO overwhelming. Happy blitz :)

roxymoreau said...

If you're really worried about being around people, then I'd suggest hiding behind your writing and making your writing talk for you. Keep posting to your blog, engage people on social media, set up a newsletter where you share awesome little flash fictions and updates. All things you can do without the face to face, and have your writing talk for you :)

Happy Blitz Day

Michelle 4 Laughs said...

I have the same fear of in person marketing. I prefer to meet people over the internet.

Happy Blitz day!

Zan Marie said...

Marketing isn't my favorite thing either, so good luck!

Happy Blitz Day, Jess!

marciastrykowski.com said...

Happy Blitz Day, Jessica! I hope you'll keep writing AND blogging. Marketing gets easier, too. :)

Timothy Brannan said...

Happy Blitz day!

Amanda said...

I have no advice except to relax and enjoy the experience! I've seen some good practical advice in these comments. Good luck!
Happy Blitz Day!

Elizabeth Hein said...

Happy Blitz Day!
Elizabeth Hein - Scribbling in the Storage Room

Emma Adams said...

Happy blitz day! :)

Bish Denham said...

1. I think most writers are introverts and not all that good with people.
2. I think most writers would rather write than talk, that's why they write.
3. I think most writers would rather stay at home and write than be out promoting.

I know that's true for me. Still, I do my best to push past all that. You have an advantage, you are young... Go for the experience. You'll learn something about yourself and that's always a good thing.

Happy Blitz Day!

dessertsanddrawings said...

Happy Blitz Day!

Brandon Ax said...

MArketing for me is one of the hardest things about all thiss.

Happy Blitzday!!!

M said...

I also communicate best through writing. Happy Blitz!

Kimber Leigh Wheaton said...

I don't like marketing either... it just stifles my creativity. But it's a necessary evil. Good luck!
Happy Blitz day!

lillian888 said...

Hi there! Congratulations on your success. I am delighted to know a young lady your age is doing so well. My writer friends have nicknamed me the "Goddess of Shameless Self-Promotion." If I can do anything to help you, please email me.

Happy BLITZ Day!

J.L. Campbell said...

Sadly, the marketing side of things won't do itself. Google searches are good for getting ideas in a pinch.

L.G. Keltner said...

I would also much rather be writing. I'm not a people person either, but marketing is a necessary part of the game I suppose. Happy Blitz Day!

Jennifer Kreft said...

Happy Blitz Day! You're right about marketing being scary, but it's also fun! Think of it as an adventure and you'll be fine! Congrats on your book!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

The more you do it, the easier marketing becomes.

Happy Blitz day!

Jeff Chapman said...

My most successful marketing efforts have been through email services. Perfect for the introvert. Happy Blitz Day!

farawayeyes said...

Hey Jessica nice to meet you. Marketing can be scary, but hey, you love to write, right? I hope you love your characters and story, so I bet the reality of it is that you can talk about that all day, right? If you've got that part licked a book signing should be easy.

Now the other aspects of marketing, well that might be a bit more difficult, but there are all sorts of places to go for good advice. It actually looks like the Blitz Team has given you a pretty good start.

Enojoy being Blitzed.

cleemckenzie said...

One thing about being a published author, you have to meet and talk to readers. Sorry. But that's the truth.

Happy Blitz DAY!

LuAnn Braley said...

Happy Blitz Day! :O)

While we don't say we LOVE to breathe, sometimes we forget to, especially when we are stressed. So my best advice is to "remember to breathe".

I suspect you'll do better than you think. As we say in the theatre, 'break a leg'. :O)

Erin L. Funk said...

Good luck with the marketing! Hope you enjoy your Blitz Day! :)

LD Masterson said...

I'm not strong on marketing but I've done a couple book signings and one positive note is the audience (or drop-bys, depending on the format) tend to be friendly and not scary at all. That helps.

And happy blitz day.

Stephen Kozeniewski said...

I like your asdl;jfk idea. I'll give you a 7-figure deal for it. Drop me a line at (212) 542-710.

D Biswas said...

Marketing scares the hell outta me. I usually try and promote other writers on my blog, instead of talking about my work.

But the thing is you are your book's best believer, if you don't become it's cheerleader, no one will.

Remember to take deep breaths and the fact that you love this book-- all you do is for the book, not yourself ;).

Happy Blitz day!

kmckendry said...

Yay Jess! Happy Blitz Day to you!

Mary Hill said...

Hi, I would love to be in shoes. Books in one book store. Congrats. I have never had a book signing either. When I met authors at signings, I would always ask them how they were published and for advice. :) PS I am a book review blog and a lot of people do book tours. Just a thought.

PS Happy Blitz Day!

Mary-andering Creatively

Mary-andering Among the Pages

Marci Koski said...

Wow - you seem like an amazing person! Congrats on your book - that's incredible! And happy blitz day! :D

Rhonda Albom said...

Congrats on your book. Hope the marketing isn't really so scary. Happy Blitz Day :)

Jacquie said...

Sorry I'm late to the party! Hour you had a fun blits day

Kim Van Sickler said...

Be approachable. Make eye contact. Smile. Say hello. Have a few stock phrases you can pull from if someone passes by your table and is looking like they may be interested in talking to you but aren't sure. Have your name and author designation prominently displayed in a table top sign (you can buy one at Office Max for $15) so anyone walking by knows who you are. Maybe Mom can hang around the store for your first one and flesh people your way?

The good news is once you get into a dialogue with people about your book you will warm to the topic and actually enjoy it.

You'll figure it out. Good luck!!!!!

Al Diaz said...

Marketing is always hard for everybody. Mostly the introvert people like most writers. Necessary evil indeed. Best luck to you and Happy Blitz Day.

AJ Lauer said...

Happy one-day-late Blitz Day! Hope it was wonderful :)

Stephen Tremp said...

Hi Jessica, hope I'm not too late for the Blitz Party. I brought nachos!

A. B. Keuser said...

Happy Blitz day (late)! And marketing is the bane of most writer's existence

Sheena-kay Graham said...

Happy Blitz Day! You just need to keep promoting. Also get more teens into your book.

lifepostbrainhemorrhage said...

Sorry I'm so late to the Blitz. The first was moving day for me and it was a catastrophe! Congratulations on your book and I hope you enjoyed your BLOG BLITZ DAY!!! Eva

~Sia McKye~ said...

Balancing life is never easy, Jess. There are lots of ways to promote yourself and your books. Considering the age group you're writing have you checked with the local schools for a way to get hooked up with some of the school fairs. They bring bus loads of k-12 to book fairs. I know my old college sponsors a book fair and lovea to have some of the authors show up. Who did the last book fair you heard about? Contact them or even the school librarian may know and even may be in the know about some of the book clubs in the area--good resource. If you did get in with a book fair you would need to have some copies of your book available to be seen/bought and you could also play up mobile gadgets that could download the electronic copy.

Most kids 8-12 think it's pretty cool that someone close to their age wrote and published book and would want to hear the story behind it.

Wishing you the best!

Sia McKye Over Coffee

Deniz Bevan said...

I'd have trouble marketing too! It's always nice when you have someone who can help. Happy belated blog blitz!

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